Sunday, August 19, 2012

Darian Wilk Blog Tour: Reinventing Claire

I'm very pleased to be hosting Darian Wilk on my blog today.  She is the author of Love Unfinished, which has a 5-star rating on Amazon, and which Darian will be offering for FREE August 20-24, so be sure to get your copy!  Plus, one lucky reader of this blog will win a copy of Darian's new book, Reinventing Claire.  To enter, simply send an entry request to by Saturday, August 25th.

In addition to all this, Darian is a fellow Michigander and an all-around sweet person.  So, without further ado, I give you my interview with Darian!

1. What made you decide to self-publish?
Like a lot of Indie authors, I started out on the traditional route.  I queried, revised, and queried some more.  It wasn’t until a friend asked me when my book would be available on Kindle that I ever even considered the idea.  I’m not a control freak, but I do like to be in charge of my own life, and the more I looked into being an Indie author the more I realized that it was a better fit for me than traditional publishing.

2. Where does your inspiration for your characters come from?

From everywhere really.  People I know, people I see around me throughout the day, and experiences in my life.  Writers write what they know, so inevitably every character is inspired by something I’ve seen or been through in life.

3. How do you write your books--do you outline, or do you just write with the flow?

I do a little bit of both.  I write best without restrictions, so a full outline, I guess you could say, cramps my style.  But, I feel stories flows best with a bit of guidance.  Typically what I’ll do is write a general outline, in thirds.  That way I don’t feel pressured to stick to an entire outline I wrote before I ever put a word on the page.  I can tweak it as the story progresses, but I still have my clear goals in sight.

4. Did you always picture yourself being a writer?  If not, what did you picture yourself doing?

Growing up, I loved writing, and toward the end of high school I did want to become a writer.  But, that idea didn’t fair well in my family.  It wasn’t practical, you see.  I ended up going a more practical route and went to college to become an RN.  That plan, however, was thrown off by becoming pregnant with my daughter.  It was the best detour I’ve ever taken!

5. What is your writing process like?  Do you have any habits you have to follow in order to feel ready to write?

Usually my writing is done while my son takes his nap, but this year both my kids will be in school.  So pretty soon, I’ll have more time to dedicate to writing.  First, I always get myself a can of Mountain Dew.  I prefer the house to be quiet, so I can focus on the words.  Then, I like to start out by re-reading the last few paragraphs I wrote the previous day, because it gets my mindset back to where I was, and where I was going.  My goal is always at least a chapter a day, or two-thousand words.  I can’t always meet that goal, but I come pretty darn close most days. 

6. What is your favorite thing about being a writer?  Your least favorite thing?

My favorite thing would be the freedom that comes in what I can write.  Being a writer gives me the chance to do, see, or explore new worlds and lives.  It’s the ultimate playground for my imagination. My least favorite, without a doubt, is promoting my work. I’m not one who feels comfortable trying to ease it into conversations to maybe get a sale out of the deal. Marketing makes me feel like a sleazy salesman.  I just don’t like it.

7. Are there any books that inspire your writing?  Which ones and why?

Anne Tyler has always been an inspiration for me.  She creates characters with such depth, yet does so in so few words.  I’ve always admired her talent, and aspire to create such realistic characters in my own work.  But there are no specific books that inspire my writing.  Books that make me feel, get me thinking, draw me in from the first page…that’s what inspires me.  Nothing will make you want to run to your laptop quicker, than reading an amazing book.

8. Where and when do you come up with your best ideas?

They always come to me at night, when I’m laying there trying to fall asleep.  That’s when my mind wanders the most in the day.  It goes from topic to topic, from one random question to the next.  Some nights it’s frustrating, because I’m exhausted and really want to sleep, but my mind has its own agenda then.  Eventually, my thoughts have wandered so far, I get a spark, and then the idea hits me.  And like a wave, it all comes at me.  I keep a notepad by my bed, because in those cases I have to jot down as much as I can because it comes so fast!

9. With which of your characters do you identify the most?

Quite honestly, although I can’t say I agree with everything she says or does, it would have to be Claire.  I identify with her the most I think because every woman, at some point, comes to a point in life when they feel lost.  We’re always someone’s mom, or wife, or sister, or daughter, or friend; we sometimes forget who we are on our own.  And I can relate to her vulnerability in her journey of trying to figure all that out.       

10. What vision do you have for writing?  Do you want to try other genres?

My vision, or goal, is and always has been to touch readers.  I want to give them stories and characters they can relate to, someone who becomes a friend they’re sharing a journey with.  And of course, that whole fame thing would be awesome.  I love this genre though, and frankly don’t think I would be a good fit for any other.  While I love reading other genres, my heart is in women’s fiction.  I think because every woman has a story within her, and I want to hear and write them all.

Reinventing Claire

 People get divorced, but that's what happens to other people. That's what Claire thought anyway, until her husband, Charlie, tells her he wants a divorce.

Claire has no choice but to take on the title of Divorced Woman, and face the question she has no idea how to answer. Who is Claire without Charlie? Her family believes her newly divorced woes can be cured by landing herself a boyfriend. With her dating dunce cap in hand, Claire stumbles her way through the foreign territory of online dating.

A teacher from hell, a softball coach, and a sap later, Claire proclaims herself the dating idiot she thought she was, and fears she's doomed to be a lonely, crazy cat lady. But an accidental run-in with an old acquaintance might change everything. What starts with comparing dating battle wounds over a cup of coffee, quickly turns into something Claire had given up on.

As Claire discovers maybe there is love after Charlie after all, Charlie realizes his mistake. He wants her back, and he'll do anything to prove it to her. Now Claire must choose who deserves her heart, and if she's really willing to give it away again.

About Darian

I'm a women's fiction writer, author of Love Unfinished and Reinventing Claire. I love the challenge and thrill of putting words onto paper, and forming it into a story. For me, the only thing better than that are my kids.

On the occasions I'm not engulfed in writing, you'll find me reading a book, either for fun or for review on my blog, Crazy Lady with a Pen. When I'm not reading, I'm spending time with my friends and family. Life is too short to pass those beautiful little moments life has to offer by, I want to soak up every moment I can.

For more information about me, my books, reviews, or my blog, please visit my website,